Celebrating the UK's trailblazing women - and inspiring the next generation

The First Women Programme was created by Real Business in 2005 and brings together outstanding women from all sectors.

The programme has created an enthusiastic and dedicated network of pioneering women, who engage directly through a series of high profile First Women events, including the Awards, Winners Lunch and Summit.

Real Business is the UK's is the most-read SME website dedicated to high-growth businesses and entrepreneurs with 124,623 monthly unique visitors (ABC audit March 2015).
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Working Lunch

At the First Women Working Lunch our inspirational winners and judges gathered to set the agenda for the 2016 First Women Summit.

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This full day summit leverages ten years of the First Women movement, drawing on the phenomenal network of pioneering women the Awards has created to educate, mentor and inspire.

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Founded by Real Business and the CBI. Since 2005, the awards have grown in influence and impact, and now enjoy the support of many of the UK’s leading businesses, business bodies and business leaders.

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First Women Exclusives

Nicola Green believes initiatives like First Women provide inspiration

Advice for women who are thinking about starting their own business

As part of Bupa’s involvement with the First Women initiative, head of direct sales for SMC at the company Nicola Green sat down for a Q&A session to reveal how she thinks the business space has changed for women during the last decade and what can be done to foster more entrepreneurship. For the interview, published on […]

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The First Women winners lunch sets the agenda for 2016's Summit

Bucking the stereotype: First Women Working Lunch reveals that hurdles still remain

A shocking report recently laid bare the extent of gender discrimination in Britain, claiming that deep inequalities remained between women and men – and that the situation may be getting worse. With that in mind, we brought together the victors of the 2015 First Women Awards for a maiden First Women Working Lunch to discover what they thought […]

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Celebrating the great tradition of afternoon tea, Jane Malyon has a growing crop of customers

Jane Malyon’s use of stealth marketing to take ownership of a market

While The English Cream Tea Company may have humble origins, conceived after one elderly lady lamented the fact she couldn’t get down to London for a proper tea anymore, the way in which it has come to dominate its space can be a lesson for everyone. Hunter Ruthven found out more. Jane Malyon definitely personifies […]

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Join the conversation #RBFIRSTWOMEN

BusinessWomenSurrey BusinessWomenSurrey @BusinessWomenSy First Women Summit returns to place big issues on the debating table once more. via @Real_Business http://t.co/H7FcETJoIl #RBFIRSTWOMEN 14 hours ago
Emma Supple Emma Supple @EmmaSupple Brilliant Aunty @janemalyon #RBFirstWomen article Innovative, tenacity and sheer colourful genius. Taking notes! 20 hours ago